Behind the Seams: The ‘Floraide’ Frock

It’s Colette Patterns Week (Yay!) at TSW Challenge and each of us gets to sew a different dress. I chose to sew the Oolong but was surprised that very few people have attempted this sewing pattern after I googled it. I’ve seen numerous versions of the Macaron, Ceylon, Roobois, Chantilly and Parfait but very few Oolong. The completed Oolong dresses I’ve found were made by Colour by Number, Pleasant View Schoolhouse, Hazel Agnes and As I said. That’s it?

Check out my TSW post and the girls’ versions of the popular Colette Pattern dresses here or get the discount code and make your own! You can also join TSW Sewing Circle and post on the forum to win the dress patterns.

Have you tried sewing from a Colette Pattern? Which is your favorite?

Pattern Review


I found the Oolong sewing pattern to be pretty easy to sew. The important part is in the cutting as every pattern piece is cut on the bias making the fabric kind of stretchy. For the same stretchy reasons, it was also essential to let the fabric rest after cutting and to hang the dress overnight before finishing the hem.

This is a slip on dress with no zipper, no buttons, no button holes. With the clear and detailed instruction booklet from Colette Patterns, I feel that this is a suitable dress for a beginner though it is graded as an intermediate project.

Based on past experience with Colette Patterns, I sewed a size 6, which I knew would be a good fit and true enough, I did not need to make any modification for this dress.  My favorite part has to be the bodice  which is ruched vertically at the center front. It is also hard to believe that such a flattering dress can be made as an easy slip on garment. I really felt fabulous in it, as with all Colette Patterns dresses I have made so far!

Thumbs up, definitely!

The Gallery

As my sewing machine only returned from the Brother Service Centre last Wednesday afternoon, I only had last Thursday and Friday to work on the dress. The photos too were taken at the last minute and as usual I relied on my not so trusty tripod.  I always wondered if the tripod which is shorter than me (it’s only at my waist) when fully extended distorts the way the garments looked and if one my height would show it more accurately. Do you use a tripod? What do you think?

To reduce my anxiety and to escape from all those neighbors I bumped into during my last photo shoot for the Blue Garden Frock (I am seriously fearful of bumping into them again!!!), I went to a quiet corner between two blocks and away from the main paths. Being alone really helps and I felt more relaxed for the shoot.

The bathroom close up shots…

Tackling the V Neck

I remembered some requests on how to tackle the V-neck coming in last year and since I’m finally making a V-neck with facing this time, I thought I should document how I did it so I could share them.

Step 1: Iron on fusible interfacing to the wrong side of the facings.

Step 2: Stitch the facing pieces together, right sides facing. Press the seam allowance open.

Step 3: Press the lower seam in twice and zig zag stitch or if you have a serger, just serge (I’m jealous:P)

Step 4: Pin and stitch facing to neckline, right sides facing, matching notches and seams.

Step 5: Notch corners (at v neck and seam turnings) and clip along the seam. Trim seam allowance.

Step 6: Turn facings to inside of the garment and press the neckline flat.

Step 7: Top stitch neckline.

We are done:)

I hope you are having a splendid week! It’s March already and I almost forgot there are fewer days in February. Phew! Good thing my mum reminded me as Made-Me-March 2011 started yesterday so I will be doing weekly or twice weekly blogs on them:)

About these ads

22 thoughts on “Behind the Seams: The ‘Floraide’ Frock

  1. Wow, it looks good—I’m amazed that (even on the bias) a pull-over dress has that nice a shape and fit :). I always think we’re about the same size/shape, but I guess not so much… I have to make soo many alterations to Colette patterns. Though so far the results have been worth it :).

    Thanks for the details on the V-neck facing :). As to finishing facings, I found a technique recently that I think is even better than a serger!… I used it on my Ceylon blouse :). Sew the interfacing to the facing, right sides together (that is, fabric right side to non-fusible side of the interfacing), along the inner edge of the facing (not the neckline edge). Flip to wrong sides together, and fuse… your edge is now finished, neatly tucked between facing and interfacing, with almost no bulk! :)

  2. Thanks Tanit-Isis! That makes two of us- it really is amazing! Colette Patterns dresses are always worth it I find, they are so great aren’t they:) Thanks for the tip on stitching the interfacing and facing together. It’s a brilliant idea!!! I am so gonna do them this way from now!

  3. i’m going to make a macaron next and the crepe is closely behind too in my mind, though i always put it aside because of the heavy yardage consumption. lol.

    what material did you use for this dress? it’s cheery. stretch fabric scares me.
    may i ask where do you buy the fusible interface? i’m going to write it in my shopping list for Sg. :)

  4. I am gonna try squeezing in my third macaron too kekeke. I’m not really into wrap dresses so I skipped the crepe. I agree with you, when I see more than 3 yards, I tend to procrastinate. LOL.

    I have no idea what it is, it behaves very well like cotton. It is stretchy because it is cut on the bias:) Not to worry, still easy to sew. Oolong is good for light weight fabrics. I got my fusible interface at spotlight, they come in diff thickness:)

  5. It’s really interesting to read your review of this dress as I haven’t seen many finished versions – as you say. Your review has definitely made me consider making this dress, particularly when you say how easy it is! :) Well done on another great make.

  6. This dress is so pretty, and it has a very flattering shape. The top-stitching around the neckline looks really neat and well done. :) Like Kerry, I haven’t seen too many finished versions of that particular pattern. I would like to try the pattern. However, it probably wouldn’t be the best pattern for me. I have large hips and a big bottom, and dresses with a sheath shape tend to accentuate them (making me uncomfortable). You have a very nice and balanced figure, so it really looks fabulous on you. So, thanks for sewing and sharing this, it looks lovely!

    I’m glad you found a good spot to take pictures. :) Your pictures look good to me. My tripod is short like that too, and it seems to work fine. Although, I’m short, so I guess I’m not the best person to ask. Haha!

  7. I’m so glad you did this dress. I was also looking for finished Oolongs last week as I would like to make it for my birthday. I looked through the entire Colette Patterns flickr stream and only found 2 completed Oolongs. Very odd how no one seems excited about that dress. After reading your review I’m feeling much more confident that it will make a good project for me.

  8. I love the fabtic and I wasn’t sure about how much I liked the oolong pattern but you made the dress look fabulous.

  9. Just beautiful Adey! Thanks for those step by step instructions for the neckline… I totally don’t ‘notch’ at all, so I guess that would help with the turning and make it flatter!

  10. I’ve used Negroni from Colette for my husband’s shirt and really love it. I’ve been thinking about buying one of their pattern for me, but their size 0 is still too big for me around the bust. But your dress is so beautiful I might want to buy one after all and adjust it! I love all your dresses!

  11. Thank you so much everyone! I enjoyed reading all your comments and am feeling encouraged!
    @Kerry: Go for it Kerry!

    @Verity: Thanks so much! I love your dresses and all your refashions are such inspirations! There are many who actually make adjustments to their Colette Patterns for the best fit so I’m sure it can still work out for you:) Thanks for letting me know about your tripod, no one else seems to know but I guess I should ask that question on a photography forum:P

    @ Sara: It will be a lovely birthday dress:) Happy birthday!

    @Nancy: Thank you! I hope more people will try this pattern out. It’s fabulous!

    @Veronica: Thank you so much babe! I find that the notching and clipping does make a difference:)

    @Oonaballoona: Let’s make up and be friends…please dun hate me pretty please :) Colette Patterns are definitely worth it. The thought that is put into the designs and instruction booklets are simply the best I have seen! I’m so glad you like my fabric choice!

    @Novita: Thank you for leaving a comment! I love your blog and your creations and am so flattered that you like my dress!

  12. Looks great – pretty awesome that you can pull it on!
    I love the fabric – I used the same print to make a dress in the summer, it’s a rayon or nylon blend of some kind.
    And for the tripod, I usually back my car into the spot where I take photos, and prop the tripod up on my tailgate. It’s a teeny tripod though, less than a foot tall. Your photos turned out awesome!

  13. Thanks so much Tasia! And thanks for letting me know that it’s either rayon or nylon blend, I always thought it was kinda smooth and soft for cotton :P I have that lil baby tripod too so thanks for the tip!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s